Karnataka crisis: Congress ready to settle demands of rebel MLAs, says DK Shivakumar

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Published: July 14, 2019 12:00:27 PM

Congress leader DK Shivakumar said that rebel MLAs know about the law and if they skip or vote against the confidence motion, action will be initiated against them according to the law.

Karnataka crisisCongress leader DK Shivakumar has said that rebel MLAs know the law and violating the party’s whip will cost them their membership.

The Congress party has exuded confidence that the rebel MLAs will return to the party fold and vote in favour of the 13-month-old government when Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy seeks trust vote inside the Karnataka Legislative Assembly. Congress troubleshooter and minister DK Shivakumar said that if the MLAs violate party’s whip, they will lose their membership, hinting that the CM will seek a vote of confidence before Speaker Ramesh Kumar takes a call on the resignation of 13 rebel MLAs.

“I have confidence in all our MLAs. They have been elected from Congress party and they have been there for a long period. They have fought like tigers in their domain,” Shivakumar told news agency ANI.

The Congress leader said that MLAs know about the law and if they skip or vote against the confidence motion, the Speaker will initiate action against them under the law. He added that the party is ready to listen and fulfill their all demands.

“At the time of Confidence Motion, they are also well-equipped with law. Law is very clear. If they vote against confidence motion, they will lose their membership. Congress party is ready to settle their demands. We are getting signals that they will save our government,” he said.

Shivakumar’s remark comes a day after rebel Congress MLA MTB Nagaraj announced that he was withdrawing his resignation and promised to bring back other rebel MLAs to the party fold. As part of efforts to reach out to dissident MLAs, Shivakumar met Nagaraj at latter’s residence on Saturday morning and camped there for more than four hours. Another Congress leader deputy CM G Parameshwara and a few other leaders too met Nagaraj to persuade him.

A total of 18 MLAs of the ruling coalition have submitted their resignations so far. This includes 13 from the Congress, three from the JD(S) and two independent MLAs. The government has also support of one BSP MLA. If the resignations of the 18 MLAs are accepted, the strength of the government will stand at 100 in 224-member House. The BJP has 105 MLAs and now enjoys the support of the two independent MLAs.

Meanwhile, the BJP has demanded that Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy should seek a trust vote on Monday, a day before the Supreme Court will be hearing on a petition of 10 other rebel MLAs of Congress-JD (S) who have resigned. On Friday, Kumaraswamy had said that he was ready to seek a trust vote on the floor of the House and urged the Speaker to fix a date for the same.

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